Saturday, April 05, 2003

Soccer? Baseball? Let's Play Hockey! 

Six-year-old legs - some spindly, some stubby, both female and male;
All thrashing wildly at rolling red-white-and-blue beehives.
Playing naive games of swarm-ball.

Sappy parents ring the green, mindful to watch their words carefully.
Johnny kicks it out of bounds . . . �Nice hustle, Son,� echoes across the field.
�Good job,� is heard at Julie�s fall.

Fifty-six teams - different mascots, yet all the same in this Chancellor�s league.
No score is kept, since each Team President knows the goal of lower education:
No one loses in nil-nil ties.

Dues are collected and compensation is set by the league�s union chief.
A collectivist�s dream: �Two orange slices and one granola bar for each,�
No more no less; there are no �Whys?�

All parents make these teams; none can be cut. Push a child? So what?
Avoid litigation and settle claims of unequal protection at all costs!
No one�s at fault in soccer land.

Corrupt lessons passed down to kids of today - tomorrow�s parent-teachers:
�Since we can�t judge each other, we can�t judge you.�
All three-point-eights! That�s where they stand.
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Switch now to MLB diamonds where once flourished America�s dream.
No ties are allowed. Extra innings if needed. We must have a winner!
One team will win; one will have lost.

Excellence applauded; incompetence booed. Individual success honored,
Rewarded with playing time, bonuses, MVP plaques, and Sports-Center spots.
Talent, results, sacrifice, cost.

Statistics kept for each player and coach: wins, losses, saves, holds,
RBI, LOB, OBA, WP, PB, SB, CS, and runners-left-in-scoring position.
Who is the best? Who�s most to blame?

There may be no �I� in this �TEAM� sport, but . . . there . . . for all to see:
A focus on individualism, with an underlined �M� & �E.�
At SCSU, should this be our game?
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Collectivist, juvenile soccer - our dysfunctional organization today.
But modeling individualistic, professional baseball? Whoa . . . that�s too far.
Which sport fits well? What should we choose?

Right in the middle, a Division I model of excellence . . . and . . . opportunity.
In our state�s fine tradition, Coach Dahl knows the words:
�Let�s play hockey,� before we all lose!